A Review of “Darwin Devolves” by Michael Behe

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The author of this new book is well known for his earlier works Darwin’s Black Box and The Edge of Evolution. In the former book Michael Behe argued that biological systems, more especially the molecular makeup of incredibly complex structures in the cell, could not have arisen via evolutionary pathways. Natural selection and mutation were simply not capable of building the city-like features that had only recently been discovered. Nor could evolution explain how these structures (like the bacterial flagellum) be constructed as functioning wholes by the processes available to it. The “irreducible complexity” of the structures meant that everything had to be put together at once in just the right way so that the molecular machine would work. Not only this, but in The Edge of Evolution Behe showed that the assembly system of the flagellar itself, with its instructions, had to be in place all at once in order for the machine to be constructed. As he notes in an appendix at the end of Darwin Devolves,

Twenty years on, there has been a grand total of zero serious attempts to show how the elegant molecular machine might have been produced by random processes and natural selection. (Darwin Devolves, 287)

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Scientists Replay Movie Encoded in DNA

"For the first time, a primitive movie has been encoded in – and then played back from – DNA in living cells. Scientists funded by the National Institutes of Health say it is a major step toward a 'molecular recorder' that may someday make it possible to get read-outs, for example, of the changing internal states of neurons as they develop." NIMH

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